Paddlefest participants take off into the river

Paddlefest begins.
Published: Sep. 15, 2023 at 10:53 PM EDT
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PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP) - People took off into the river for the first day of Paddlefest.

Hours before the boats even hit the water, participants started gathering at Point Park. A few participants came from as far as Cincinnati.

The theme of Paddlefest is people-powered watercraft. That means people can bring kayaks, paddle boards, row boats, or anything else without a motor.

To kick off Paddlefest, participants paddled up the Little Kanawha River but it wasn’t your everyday trip.

Mark Lewis of Greater Parkersburg Convention and Visitors Bureau, explained, “People take all different tactics in terms of lighting. There are glow sticks, glow necklaces, glow wristbands, then people actually bring battery-powered lights and hook them up to their boats. Some of them are pretty spectacular.”

Participants will paddle from Point Park to Blennerhassett Island and back on Saturday. There will be activities at the island for an extra cost.

It will last from 8am to 2pm.

You can register the day of. Just bring $20. Kayaks are rented separately.

There are kayaks you can rent set up at Point Park.